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Wider roads needed to take BrahMos like equipment to LAC: Centre to SC

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Wider roads needed to take BrahMos like equipment to LAC: Centre to SC
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New Delhi: The Central government wanted the Supreme Court to grant permission to widen the environmentally critical the Char Dham mountain region of Uttarakhand citing the Chinese military build-up across the Line of Actual Control.

Appearing for the Central government before a bench headed by Justice D Y Chandrachud in the apex court, Attorney General K K Venugopal said that wider roads and facilities necessitate in the region in order to transport heavy military equipment like BrahMos missiles considering the strengthening the Chinese military deployment at the LAC for boarder security.

Venugopal also countered the anticipated environmental impact of the constructions to be held in the region by pointing out the responsibility of the Army that he said will tackle the issues if some unwarranted incidents like landslides were occurred.

The Attorney General also emphasised the importance of defending the country in whatever condition with the available possibilities and capacities.

The bench is hearing a plea by NGO Citizens for Green Doon which has challenged the Stage-I forest and wildlife clearance granted for improvement and expansion of feeder roads there by felling trees.

Two days ago, the bench, also comprising Justices Surya Kant and Vikram Nath, had underlined its "predicament" by asking if it could "override defence needs" on environmental grounds.

"We cannot deny the fact that at such a height, the security of the nation is at stake. Can the highest constitutional court say that we will override defence needs particularly in the face of recent events? Can we say that environment will triumph over the defence of the nation? Or we say that defence concerns be taken care of so that environmental degradation does not take place?" the bench had said.

The petitioner NGO, however, contended that the project was meant to facilitate the Char Dham Yatra conceived in 2016 so that more tourists can trek up the mountains.

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